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Pandemic and mental health fears impacting millions of Americans

The coronavirus not only threatens physical health, but also the mental health of millions.

From a sense of uncertainty to fear of the unknown, the pandemic is prompting a wave of new emotions. 

As people adjust to the new normal of the coronavirus, feelings of stress, anxiety and depression are rising.

According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, nearly half of Americans feel the pandemic has negatively impacted their mental health. So what are some ways to cope with this crisis?

For starters, maintain a healthy diet. Dietitians say people are more likely to crave junk food when they're stressed, so it's important to stock up on healthy snacks.

Establishing a routine is also key.

Health experts recommend making a schedule and sticking to it. This can include exercising, while keeping social distancing in mind, or taking up a new indoor hobby. And while it may be tempting to take a nap, experts say you should stick to your normal sleep schedule.

If you have kids at home, make sure to balance school with some play time, and ask how they would like to spend their free hours.

Another way to maintain a sense of normalcy is staying connected.

Psychologists say hosting a virtual get-together with friends or family is a great way to combat feelings of loneliness.

Many states have also launched around-the-clock hotlines for those struggling with mental health.

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